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Presentation Secrets: Do What you Never Thought Possible With Your Presentations by Alexei Kapterev

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FOCUSING ON ONE IDEA

Most books on storytelling—this one is no exception (because making a presentation is ultimately storytelling)—begin with the same advice. You need one idea for your story, so decide on it early. As screenwriter Peter Dunne in Emotional Structure puts it, “[W]riters have to make choices. The first choice is to choose one, and only one, idea to develop into a screenplay.” Likewise, presenters have to make two decisions: to make a presentation and to decide on the one idea to develop. You might say “Hey, the topic of my presentation is so complex there's no way I can distill it down into one idea; my presentation is not a fairy tale.” It doesn't matter whether or not your presentation is complex; you still need one idea to organize it around. I would even argue that if your topic is complex you absolutely need one idea. It will give you focus and direction and help the audience stay oriented. Otherwise, your presentation is in real danger of becoming the convoluted mess that most presentations are.

If your focus is wrong, you can always shift it.

Are you afraid that if you start with one idea you'll end up having a simplistic presentation? ...

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